The Centre’s Narendra Modi government on Friday told the Supreme Court that it was not possible to include Urdu in Neet exams in 2017 adding that the government was open to idea of conducting NEET single window medical and dental admission test in Urdu from next academic year.
This came after a plea suggesting making Urdu as a medium for NEET 2017, a common entrance test for admissions in MBBS and BDS courses across the country, last week had prompted the Supreme Court to seek responses from the Centre and Medical Council of India (MCI).
“Issue notice,” a bench comprising Justices Kurian Joseph and R Banumathi had said while taking note of the petition filed by Student Islamic Organisation (SIO).
The bench had also noted the submission that MCI was open to include any language as a medium of National Eligibility-cum- Entrance Test (NEET) if a request was made to it by states concerned.
Besides the Centre and MCI, the court also had issued notices to Dental Council of India (DCI) and Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and fixed the plea for further hearing on March 10.
The counsel for SIO informed the court that Maharashtra and Telangana have already apprised the MCI that Urdu be included as one of the medium for conducting NEET.
Currently, NEET is being conducted in ten languages – Hindi, English, Gujarati, Marathi, Oriya, Bengali, Assamese, Telegu, Tamil and Kannada languages.
Earlier, the apex court had refused to give urgent hearing to the petition, filed through lawyers Parvez Dabas and Ravindra S Garia, alleging that exclusion of Urdu as one of the languages in NEET exam to be held on May 7 was “arbitrary and violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution”.
“The decision to exclude Urdu was discriminatory, arbitrary, unreasonable and violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution,” it said.
“The decision to exclude Urdu which is the sixth most spoken language of India, while including seventh most spoken language Gujarati, and twelfth most spoken language Assamese is completely without any rationale basis,” it said.